HSE wins international UN award for tackling chronic disease

HSE Press Release, Friday, 01 October 2021

The United Nations Interagency Taskforce (UNIATF) recognises HSE Structured Chronic Disease Management Programme (CDM)

The HSE Chronic Disease Management Programme (CDM) recently received an international award for developing a structured illness and preventative care programme in general practice. The aim of the programme is to reduce morbidity and mortality from Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs).

The award recognises the CDM Programme’s work to develop the ‘GP Chronic Disease Contract and rolling it out despite the COVID-19 pandemic’. The Irish College of General Practitioners (ICGP) nominated the programme for an award.

The UNIATF awards recognise outstanding contributions to multi-sectoral action in the prevention and control of NCDs at local, national, regional or international level. Commenting on the award, HSE National Clinical Advisor and Programme Group Lead for Chronic Disease, Dr Orlaith O’Reilly said: “It’s an honour to see the CDM Programme recognised in this way. The CDM Programme works with GPs across Ireland to prevent and manage patient chronic diseases using a population approach. Before this Ireland had no formalised structure for NCD management in primary care. We remain committed to the roll-out of this programme.

“The CDM programme provides a structured management programme for people with a history of cardiovascular disease, COPD, asthma and type 2 diabetes in general practice. It focuses on prevention, patient empowerment, early diagnosis and intervention, multi-morbidity and the provision of care as close to home as possible.

“The programme emphasises lifestyle and medical risk factor control, disease management and the creation of a patient care plan. The GP in partnership with the patient works to develop this plan. We rolled out an IT solution, embedded in general practice, which provides decision support for NCD management. It also gives real-time return of data to a central data repository. This supports service planning and quality improvement initiatives in primary care,” she added.

The CDM programme supports GPs (family doctors) to identify and manage patients, with a medical card or GP visit card, who are at risk of chronic disease or who have been diagnosed with one or more specified chronic diseases.

Pat Healy, National Director, HSE Clinical Programme Implementation & Professional Development said: “I am delighted that the work of the HSE the Structured Chronic Disease Management Programme has been recognised internationally. This programme was to launch in March 2020, just as the COVID-19 pandemic spread to Ireland. But rather than pause the programme, and recognising the syndemic of NCDs and COVID-19, we accelerated the roll-out of the programme. We expanded the initial age cohort. We also brought remote consultations on stream to protect our most vulnerable patients.

“GPs have played a significant role in the role out of the CDM programme. Over 85% of GPs in Ireland have registered to provide the programme to date. Between March and December 2020, GPs and practice nurses undertook over 119,000 consultations for people aged over 70 years. Programme data shows that 90% of people with these conditions are being managed solely in general practice for their NCDs.”

A significant part of this programme is Making Every Contact Count. This focuses on interventions relating to tobacco, alcohol, sedentary behaviour and obesity or overweight. Year one data shows that smoking status, BMI and blood pressure were examined in over 90% of all consultations. Over 85% of GPs in Ireland have registered to provide the programme to date.


Last updated on: 01 / 10 / 2021